The End of Time

So today I watched the second part of The End of Time, the Doctor Who story in which David Tennant bows out of playing the tenth Doctor, and Russell T. Davies bows out of being the main scriptwriter.
 
I have to say that I have mixed feelings. Kudos to Davies for successfully rebooting the whole Doctor Who story universe, and Tennant for being a good choice for the Doctor. But having said that, I couldn’t shake off the feeling that, for the most part, this series finale showed up the weaknesses of Davies’ writing.
 
The first part struck me as though Davies was doing an awful lot of gleeful vamping of plot elements in order to build up to that awful pun uttered by The Master near the end. It was almost as if he had started with that pun and worked backwards from there. 
 
The second part left me largely unmoved in directly inverse proportion to the amount of mayhem that was being portrayed on the screen. Only the quieter moments, and the elegaic farewells to other characters of past storylines in the closing minutes seemed to be worthy of the event. Bernard Cribbins, in particular, was a joy to watch.
 
Now we have the next Doctor to look forward to. I’ll reserve judgement on the actor, but I am hoping for a lot from the new writer, Steven Moffat, who on past performance has already provided us with the best Doctor Who stories I’ve yet seen.

About Geoff Coupe

I'm a British citizen, although I have lived and worked in the Netherlands since 1983. I came here on a three year assignment, but fell in love with the country, and one Dutchman in particular, and so have stayed here ever since. On the 13th December 2006 I also became a Dutch citizen.
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4 Responses to The End of Time

  1. robert says:

    Yes I’d also go with that pun being the plot driving force. I need to rewatch that second episode, I was looking at my watch thinking what on earth are they going to do for the next 20 minutes but by the end I was almost reconciled to it. Bit like – to take a rather over the top simile – the end of Rosenkavalier – all the oomph goes out of the plot and the author is just left to do his own rather wonderful thing!

  2. Geoff says:

    Robert, thanks. Do you know, I’ve never actually seen Der Rosenkavalier – yet another thing to try and do before I die! The ending rather reminded me of the last 20 minutes of Jackson’s Return of the King – it had the same bittersweet quality…

  3. Andy says:

    I entirely agree – this was such a disappointing finale given the excellent episodes that had come before, such as "Blink!". Being dropped out of a spacecraft and falling through a glass ceiling about 50 foot to a concrete floor without injury appears to be an as-yet undemonstrated gift of a Time Lord, amongst the many other plot holes. Like you, I think it is great that Russell Davies has revamped the franchise, but someone should have taken a trip back in time to when he penned this and had a word in his ear.

  4. Geoff says:

    Andy, it’s rather telling that Blink! was one of the Steven Moffat episodes. It’s giving me hope that the next series will raise the bar once again…

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